Online Teaching Evaluation

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Courses always need to undergo change and improvement. Evaluation is an important part of this process. There should not be separate, different evaluation criteria for on site and online courses (U.S. Department of Education's Office of Post-secondary Education). The evaluation process includes manager/administrator observation, peer observation, and student evaluations. It is also advised to give your own end-of-course evaluation to students at the end of your course to ask for feedback and suggestions (see sidebar). In addition to the evaluation process, there also may be an need for college certification of online teaching (such using @ONE)




A. Manager and Peer Observations:

The manager gives a 3-week window for entering an instructor's online class. The instructor must then allow open access to his/her online course(s) for that period (by adding the evaluators to the course, listing any access procedures, etc.). The instructor also chooses a peer to observe/evaluate their course (usually an instructor in the same subject area). The peer evaluator usually follows the same 3-week window. It is best that the manager and peer evaluators be very familiar with online teaching. If not, training should be provided or another evaluator should be selected.


Below is chart of "categories for evaluation" on the "Peer/Manager Instructor Evaluation Form (full form available on link below) and how each relates to online classes.


Category for Evaluation
Applicable Online Class Area
Command of subject matter Presentations, Discussions
Communication of subject matter Presentations, Discussions
Preparation for class Layout and functionality, email responses
Relationship of content to course objectives Presentations, assignments, Testing questions
Effectiveness of teaching approach used Layout, presentations
Responsiveness to students Discussions, email
Availability to students Discussions, email, contact information
Learning climate created Layout, Discussions
Awareness of student differences Discussions
Evidence of professional growth Use of new technology within course
Quality of professional relationships  
Related duties as specified in the official Job Description Timely development of course, submission of college course schedule notes

Source: Peer and Manager Evaluation


B. Student Evaluations:

[Starting Spring 09] Students are emailed letting them know about the process and how to complete the evaluation. They are provided a link to the evaluation form (see below) and can return it anonymously to IS who then forwards it to Instructional Operations (this is similar to F2F classes). This student form has been revised with new wording that better reflects online teaching. The new forms will used beginning Spring 09. All forms are the same for both online and F2F classes.


Applicable Online Class Area
The instructor communicates clearly.
Presentations, email, Discussions, feedback
The content of the assignments contributes to my understanding of the subject.
The requirements of the course (projects, papers, exams, etc.) were explained adequately.
Syllabus, orientation, assignment instructions
The instructor's presentation often causes me to think in depth about this subject.
Discussions, presentations
The methods used for evaluating my work (such as tests, projects, etc.) are reasonable.
The instructor provides adequate opportunities for me to ask questions.
Discussions, email
The instructor is teaching the course materials or skills clearly.
Discussions, presentations, assignments
The instructor seems to be well prepared.
The instructor seems to care about my learning.
The course appears to have been carefully planned.
Course objectives are being achieved.
During the term, I look forward to participating in this class.
Course objectives have been expressed clearly.  
The instructor provides useful feedback on student progress (identifying strengths and weaknesses). Written work feedback
In this course, I am learning much.  
The course assignments are challenging.  
Overall, I rate this instructor an excellent instructor.  
Examinations cover materials or skills emphasized in the class.  
The time allowed to complete exams is adequate. Timed tests
Examination questions are phrased clearly. Tests
The instructor has been able to provide help when requested. Emails
The instructor is willing to entertain opposing viewpoints. Discussions
The instructor seems to respect students. Emails, Discussions
The instructor returns materials in a timely manner.  
The textbooks contribute to my understanding of the subject.  
[If the class has a laboratory, please respond to the following items:]  
The clinical experiences, or laboratory, meet my learning needs for this course.  
The instructor explains or illustrates laboratory or clinical techniques clearly.  
Pre-laboratory assignments (assigned readings and exercises) contribute to my understanding of laboratory experiments.  
The laboratory contributes to my understanding of the subject.  
The laboratory manual adequately explains the procedures to be followed in the laboratory.  
Equipment and materials needed to perform the laboratory experiments are organized and readily available for use during the laboratory.  
[The following items are supplied by instructor's department:]